IRAQWAR.RU

The IRAQWAR.RU analytical center was created recently by a group of journalists and military experts from Russia to provide accurate and up-to-date news and analysis of the war against Iraq. The following is the English translation of the IRAQWAR.RU report based on the Russian military intelligence reports.

This site posting reports that draws a different image than the US media. I have found one of the latest reports translated to English.

America’s Image Further Erodes

People-Press.org:

»Anti-war sentiment and disapproval of President Bush’s international policies continue to erode America’s image among the publics of its allies. U.S. favorability ratings have plummeted in the past six months in countries actively opposing war – France, Germany and Russia – as well as in countries that are part of the “coalition of the willing.”…«

Sebastian Fiedler:

»Congratulations Wolfowitz, Perle, Rumsfeld, and the rest of the junta! You have successfully pissed off most of the thinking population of this planet. If this doesn’t backfire on the USA I will eat all my history books…«

Misconceptions

Lots of chatter going on about if the military strategy of the “house of cards” turns out to be right or wrong. What was wrong are the armchair so called “security advisors” that still don’t get why the »Ministery of Defense« is not called »Ministery of Offense«. Here is what Richard Perle said not too long ago:

As Perle told US News & World Report: “The Iraqi opposition is kind of like an MRE [meals ready to eat, a freeze-dried Army field ration]. The ingredients are there and you just have to add water, in this case U.S. support.” Testifying before Congress in 2000, Perle insisted, “We need not send substantial ground forces into Iraq when patriotic Iraqis are willing to fight to liberate their country.” Last year, he conceded that the US troop requirement might go as high as 40,000.

The problem with the current war is that any outcome is a bad one. No one can win. I have not heard of a political advisor in the White House that is a distinct expert in Middle East culture or has worked or lived there for a while. I think it is not the Iraqis that will primarily recieve freedom. That ‘freedom’ may release the hidden agendas of the ethnic minorities that have been surpressed over decades and potentially these agendas may not be about democracy at all. And whatever time it may take to defeat Saddam Hussein: the world has become a less safer place already.

Reality & Real time

I can receive MSNCB Europe and CNN Europe on my TV. Sometimes at nighttime there is FoxNews (which I don’t want to see at all). There has been talk about if the »embedded journalists« make sense.

I recognized it when I was in New York on 9/11: the majority of the US public does take “live on TV” for “authentic”. The idea of “real time” being more authentic because the image could not be post-processed by a journalist is fundamentally flawed. Of course you see “more” than you would without TV. But you see far less than required to make a judgment. Good journalism is about closing this gap. It seems there is no space left on TV for journalism in the US. Where are the reports? Where is the investigative journalism? Is this just happening in the newspapers most parts of the US public does not read anyway?

Most of what the so called journalists on CNN and MSNBC do is simply repeating of what has been said by someone. Everything is pledged to the persuasive power of images. Showing a live image of Baghdad, waiting for an explosion to hit is as perverted as television could be.

U.S. not interested in peace?

Clearly even if you are promoting a US strike against Iraq, there should be one thing to consider: If the U.S. strikes without formal permission of the UN and without recognizing Iraqs effort to apply to the resolution 1441 – how will U.S. ever be able to solve any future conflict peacefully? If there is not advantage to apply to a UN resolution in future and U.S. ‘enemies’ would have to expect a strike even if there is will to give in, why should they wait until U.S. forces are properly set up for a deliberate attack?

If you have ‘evidence’ that a brute force attack on your country is inescapable, what would you do?

The Bush administration is busting the friendly ties with allies all over the world. There is a point when friends want to be heard. There is a “coalition of the willing” – but it could be a coalition of the ones willing to contain U.S. power.

Revealed: US dirty tricks to win vote on Iraq war

»Secret document details American plan to bug phones and emails of key Security Council members. […] Details of the aggressive surveillance operation, which involves interception of the home and office telephones and the emails of UN delegates in New York, are revealed in a document leaked to The Observer.«

[blogdex]

Read that secret document.

News coverage in US flawed?

»Most people, though, get their news from TV — and there the difference is immense. The coverage of Saturday’s antiwar rallies was a reminder of the extent to which U.S. cable news, in particular, seems to be reporting about a different planet than the one covered by foreign media.
What would someone watching cable news have seen? On Saturday, news anchors on Fox described the demonstrators in New York as “the usual protesters” or “serial protesters.” CNN wasn’t quite so dismissive, but on Sunday morning the headline on the network’s Web site read “Antiwar rallies delight Iraq,” and the accompanying picture showed marchers in Baghdad, not London or New York.«

That’s a deja-vu. I wouldn’t say news media in US are biased – but they just seem to be accurate while in fact they are a desaster from a journalist perspective. This should bother everyone.

I observed this when I was trapped in New York after 9/11:

»Almost all US news channels I saw were stunningly superficial, manipulative, out-of-context presentation of news, full of unverified facts, shortening essential details in a unsustainbable manner.
[…]
The problem is not obvious. I do not want to suggest active disinformation. It is more about subtext, what is left out, what is considered important and what not, how things are contextualized and backed up with sources.«

US to punish German ‘treachery’?

The Observer:

»The plan – discussed by Pentagon officials and military chiefs last week on the orders of Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld – is designed ‘to harm’ the German economy to make an example of the country for what US hawks see as Chancellor Gerhard Schröder’s ‘treachery’. […]
Another Pentagon source said: ‘The aim is to hit German trade and commerce. It is not just about taking out the troops and equipment; it is also about cancelling commercial contracts and defence-related arrangements.’«

[Daypop Top News Stories]

CNN transcript is cut a bit short

On Friday the 14th of February CNN.com presented a “transcript” of Hans Blix’s presentation to the U.N. Security Council concerning the progress of weapons inspections in Iraq. Comparison with other transcripts, notably that presented by the BBC , reveals that a substantial section of the presentation was omitted in the CNN version. The missing text includes descriptions of important instances of Iraqi government cooperation and presents a relatively favourable picture of inspectors’ access to scientists. [Kuro5hin.org]